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2 rafters rescued from Roaring Fork River in Pitkin County; 1 with life-threatening injuries

Posted at 10:33 AM, Jun 09, 2024

PITKIN COUNTY, Colo. — Two men were rescued from the Roaring Fork River in Pitkin County after their rafts capsized in the water Saturday.

One victim, a 74-year-old man, is in the hospital with life-threatening injuries, the other victim, a 61-year-old man, was treated on scene for minor injuries, according to the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office.

Rescue crews responded to the Basalt Whitewater Park around 2 p.m. after reports that two boats capsized and the two occupants were floating downriver, the sheriff’s office said.

Crews searched the river from the 7-Eleven bridge to Willits Lane, spotting the rafters a short time later. They were pulled from the river where the 74-year-old man was transported to Valley View Hospital. His current condition is not known.

The Basalt Whitewater Park, located on the river across from Basalt's Elk Run subdivision on Two Rivers Road, includes two play waves within a designated 1,000 feet of river.

The Pitkin County Sheriff's Office emphasizes that whitewater enthusiasts should be aware of the rapidly changing river conditions at this time of year. The river is running near peak levels and the conditions are extremely dangerous.

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